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1  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: February 10, 2014, 06:02:25 AM
Refund requests have been processed for all those that have accepted. If you have not received an email, and believe there is a discrepancy with your account, please sent an email to asicbuy@gmail.com. An additional email will be sent to everyone on the mailing list to notify them.

Thank you again for for patience. I know this has been a long time coming, and appreciate your understanding as we work to get everything sorted. We are still extremely busy working on getting the next units ready for launch, and hope to have more information soon.

Have a wonderful day,

Steamboat
2  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: December 03, 2013, 08:44:11 AM
Update:

Hosting:
The hosting setup is now complete, with all units stable and hashing. We have had to overcome several obstacles during the setup phase. Mainly, the lack of chaining ability, lack of serialization, much greater power usage, and increased thermal dissipation requirements have delayed the process and necessitated a redesign of the hosting configuration.

We had hoped to be able to daisy-chain the units as per the original design in order to reduce the amount of cables and hubs required. Unfortunately, the firmware is still missing this functionality. This does not affect the cluster performance, but did result in slight delays bringing the cluster online due to difficulty finding compatible hubs which were stable, with enough ports to connect the units.

Our original intent was to assign each unit to its corresponding customer in order to track payouts. As this is no longer a possibility due to the lack of individual serial numbers, we have chosen to configure the cluster and payouts as a pool, with each account receiving a percentage of the payouts based on the number of units owned. This setup does however cause a situation in the event one of the units becomes non-functional. To address this, we will be physically labeling each device with a unique customer number. In the event a unit breaks and cannot be fixed, the owner of that unit will be notified. In order to mitigate losses due to a unit failure, we will be replacing the first 5% of the total hosted units with our own, at no additional charge. Once 5% of the total hosted units have been replaced, any future failures will be the responsibility of the owner.

The estimated power requirements for each unit were 30-35 watts. The units are currently consuming more than 50 watts at 282mhz, or 4.5gh/s. This increase is largely due to the 1.2v regulators chosen in the design. The increased power usage also greatly increases the temperature for the regulators, which causes the units to shut down if they overheat. The regulators require low ambient temperatures and direct airflow in order to overclock the units. We are currently testing different cooling designs, and are increasing the amount of active cooling available in order to overclock the units, but are having difficulties due to the amount of units, and subsequently the amount of cooling required. In addition to the on-board fans, we have several fans blowing A/C directly across the units and funneling the heat away, and have greatly increased the spacing to reduce the amount of heat from adjacent units. This is keeping the temperatures low enough that the regulators do not shut down, which requires a power disconnect and cooldown period before power up, but is currently limiting the units to 4.5 gh/s. We hope to increase this to a minimum of 5gh/s shortly.

We will be processing payments for hosting for the first period shortly, and after each subsequent difficulty change thereafter. The first payment will be for the difficulty periods beginning November 5th and November 17th. While the cluster was not at 100% until recently due to setup and testing, payouts for these periods will be based on 100% uptime with a hashrate of 4.5gh/s. We will also be waiving the hosting and electrical fees for these periods. The power consumption per unit is 75 watts, which includes the units themselves and the infrastructure necessary to house and cool them. The electricity cost for each period will be calculated using the Coinbase USD/BTC exchange rate at the end of each period.


Assembly:
It is with a heavy heart we report the resources for full time development of the USB bootloader and I2C daisy-chain functionality have been exhausted. We have been working tirelessly with our partners and a third party engineering firm to complete the design where it was left off, which has proven unsuccessful. In light of this, we will be packaging and shipping all remaining units in the next couple of days. We will continue to work on it as time and resources allow, and our partners have announced they will be doing the same. Bkkcoins has mentioned he has completed the bootloader code, but has not released it to-date.

Assembly refunds:
With assembly, troubleshooting, coding, shipping and hosting setup drawing to a close, we can now begin processing refund requests. We apologize for the extended delay. Our initial role in this project was to design the accessory hardware, source components, assemble, and ship units based on the Klondike design. Due to circumstances outside our control, we were forced to rapidly assume much greater responsibility in the troubleshooting and testing phase of the project, which strained our resources to their limits and forced us to triage certain services. Thankfully, several members of the community and our partners stepped up to assist us in completing the project, without whom it is uncertain if we would have succeeded. I would like to personally thank Cray-1, Droid, Fasmax, Imagex, Jasinlee, Jimrome, Kano, Kostagr33k, Laserhorse, Pcb355, Ryepdx, Sensei, Stbgefltc, Unacceptable, Vigil, Zipiju, our team, and everyone else who assisted with this project. Their expertise, dedication, and countless hours of work were invaluable throughout this project.

During the course of providing this assembly service, we received payments through our website in BTC, which was converted to USD and subsequently used in fulfilling our obligations. An explanation of these expenditures may be found in the assembly refund section of post https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=192916.msg3128451#msg3128451. Since that time, we have continued work finalizing and troubleshooting the design, and assembling, testing, and shipping the units; in addition to setting up hosting for those customers who purchased the service. As a result of extended delays due to an incomplete design, troubleshooting, poor chip performance, and canceled orders, our original cost estimations have proven inaccurate. While the circumstances surrounding this project were largely outside our control, and could not have been realistically anticipated, we felt it our responsibility to do everything in our power to see the project through to the end.

Very little of the funds received remain to process refund requests. We understand our announcement of a 25% refund of assembly costs, and 100% of the shipping and hosting fees played a large part in our customer’s decision to request a refund. This announcement was not made lightly, and we knew there was a high probability the funds received would not be sufficient to cover refund requests should anything go wrong. Unfortunately, we have experienced the worst case scenario, as evidenced by the extreme difficulties surrounding the project. We had decided then that we would fund the balance for refunds should the need arise, and we will honor this decision. The refund will include 25% of the assembly costs, and 100% of the shipping and hosting fees, as well as 100% of the assembly fees for those customers that purchased the Fully Assembled unit finish option.

The unit cost and payment were priced in USD. This was necessary as while we would like the vendors we work with to accept BTC, that time has not yet come. As such, the refunds will be processed based on the USD price of the units, and remitted in BTC. While we are not responsible for fluctuations in the exchange rate, we have chosen to lock the rate to that of Sept. 11th, the day we announced we would be accepting assembly refund requests, in order to attempt to help ease the BTC losses of our customers. The exchange rate will be $126.61 per BTC, based on the price history of Coinbase.

We have been working with developers on designs for a new unit using more efficient chips. Of the designs commissioned, only one has met the initial requirements. We had originally chosen to build a unit which gave us the highest overclock potential using the Bitfury chips. Unfortunately, the component and manufacturing costs of the design are too great to be competitive. We are in the process of reworking the design to be more efficient without attempting to push the chips past their nominal operating specs, which should reduce the price of the units to a level more in line with current offerings. We do not know if this redesign will be successful, or it’s timeline for release.

We have been working with the assembly house and their consignment company to determine the best approach to sell the remaining component stock should we be unable to reuse them in a future design. The majority of the components were purchased through various parts brokers, and cannot be returned. Their optimistic return estimate is 40% of the price we paid via consignment, and only a fraction if we were to accept a lump sum payment. We are also preparing to sell those portions of the accessory components with resale value in order to recover as much as possible, but will likely only be able to recoup a small percentage of those costs as well.

In the event we are unsuccessful in developing a new product which utilizes the components on hand, we will sell the remaining stock, which will then be remitted in BTC based on the USD/BTC exchange rate at that time. The timeline for this process is still unknown.

All those that purchased chips and assembly and have had their chip purchase refunded are eligible for and will receive the assembly refund. We will be processing the refunds over the course of the next few weeks. Please continue to be patient with us during this process, as it will take time.
3  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: November 02, 2013, 06:46:58 PM
Update:
 
With the addition of the latest revisions to CGM, we have several test units running stable for several days using the latest firmware, with error rates less than .001%.
 
We are nearing completion of the USB bootloader, and have discovered a potentially serious issue. We believe we will be successful in porting a bootloader for use with the onboard PIC16 controller, but may not be able to install it and the board firmware at the same time due to memory constraints. The PIC16 has 16k of available memory. Our calculations estimate the finished bootloader will consume roughly 4k of the available memory, which will not leave enough room for the firmware in its present state. We have begun removing unused portions of the firmware code to reduce its size, and will be testing pro versions of the Microchip compiler to further reduce its size, but it is currently unclear as to whether or not this will be enough.
 
While we will continue to do everything in our power to deliver full functionality to the units, our options are limited by the design, and there is a real possibility the hardware simply will not be able to support a USB bootloader. As such, if the ability to update the firmware via usb or chain the units via the I2C connector is not a priority for you, the best option at this point may be to request shipment of the units as-is.
 
As before, to request your units be shipped as-is, without the ability to update the firmware via USB, please ensure the shipping address provided on your liquidsyndesigns.com account is correct, and reply to this email with the subject “Please ship my units without USB bootloader”.
 
Hosting:
 
We have begun setting up hosting for those customers who have purchased this service. Several modifications were necessary due to the unfinished I2C functionality, as well as the lack of individually serialized units. With the arrival of additional hardware and successful testing of the latest firmware, we are now building out the cluster. We have had to modify our original hosting design completely, which is now complete. Additional information and instructions will be sent to those with hosted units.
 
Assembly refunds:
 
Many of you are still waiting for information regarding the assembly refund process. We understand the wait is aggravating, and appreciate your patience in this matter. Our resources are finite, and the work load for this project has increased substantially due to reasons outside our control. We will be publishing more information when we are able, and can assure you the solution will be as fair as possible. You will not be punished for our lack of timely response in this matter.
4  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: October 29, 2013, 06:43:35 PM
Work in progress:

http://projectklondike.org/
5  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: October 23, 2013, 11:11:39 PM
Update:

Assembly status:
We have completed both board level and final assembly. Unit testing has been delayed due to firmware issues and lack of ktest utility. We have been testing with rough values using the old firmware, which will assist us in expediting final testing, which expect to complete within two days.

The firmware bug causing high error rates has been discovered and corrected as of early this morning. We are continuing to run tests, but believe the base firmware is now stable. We have also greatly reduced the performance issues when connecting multiple units within CGminer. Currently, we are running stable at 300mhz at 4.9gh/s, with less than 0.5% errors.

We are continuing to work on the USB bootloader, which we hope to have finalized this week. Once the USB bootloader has been completed, we will begin work on the I2C connection and optimizing the firmware, while continuing to optimize CGminer.

We have received requests to ship the units in their current state, without the ability to update the firmware via USB. We are now accepting requests to ship units as-is, but advise against it. This option should only be considered if you have a large order and are comfortable with programming. Currently, the only method of flashing the units is to use a Pickit3 Pic programmer with a suggested pogo pin adapter, connected to a host running MPLAB IPE/IDE. This is a fairly complex process for those unfamiliar with programming, and materials costs are ~$80. Units shipped without the USB bootloader will require initially flashing the units using the on board ICSP pads to update the firmware to allow USB updates.

If you would like to request your units shipped as-is, please ensure the shipping address provided on your liquidsyndesigns.com account is correct, and reply to this email with the subject “Please ship my units without USB bootloader”.

Assembly refunds:

We have been working on the assembly refund process as time permits, and will be sending an email with instructions in the next few days. We appreciate your patience in this matter.
6  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: October 02, 2013, 07:24:42 PM
Chip refunds:
The majority of the eligible chip refunds have been processed, with the remainder to be sent tonight. We received enough requests to process 4 batches of refunds. To date, there still have not been enough requests to fulfill the fifth batch. Of the remaining two batches, we have processed and additional 200 BTC worth of chips using our own funds. Those who have submitted a refund request which cannot be fulfilled will be contacted shortly regarding their order.

Chip status:
Batch 1 and 2 have arrived, and have been sent to the assembly house. Those with a chip only order will be sent an email shortly confirming their information. Shipping will be provided free of charge for all chip only purchases.
Update:

Assembly status:
We have successfully determined the source of the hardware issues, as well as a portion of the software/firmware conflicts, and are now hashing on all 16 chips at 4.6-4.8GH/s, at 350mhz. We are still receiving high hardware error rates, which we believe is a combination of the on board PIC and suboptimal firmware, and are in the process of optimizing the driver to reduce the error rates. Overclocking testing has also shown the thermal vias were not being fully filled due to the way they were designed. The assembly house has developed a two-step process to address this, and will be ready to assemble today pending final verification after we have tested and approved the process. During testing the 3.3v regulator was operating over spec, using more amps than it is rated for. While the unit functions and the component appears to be stable, we have chosen to replace it in order to ensure there are no failures during extended long term operation.

There are several firmware issues which need to be addressed before the units are ready for end use. The first priority is a USB bootloader. This is necessary to flash the units with firmware updates via USB without the need for additional hardware and software. Additionally, there is an issue with cgminer which does not allow multiple units to be connected to the same instance without severe performance degradation. This is not essential to shipping the units so long as the USB bootloader is properly programmed, but does increase the amount of time required to test the units as the ktest utility remains unfinished. We are also working on auto-serialization code to allow us to step-program the units with a unique serial number without the need to rebuild the hex file for each board. Lowest on the priority list is I2C implementation to allow chaining between boards. While it greatly reduces the amount of USB cables and hubs necessary to connect multiple units, it is not necessary for the unit to function.

Assembly refunds:
We will be releasing information as soon as we can regarding assembly refunds. We understand you are anxious to receive your refunds, and we are working on it. Our first priority is fulfilling our obligations to those customers who have chosen to receive their units. This unfortunately is not a process we can rush. Please continue to be patient with us as we work to catch up.

I would like to devote more time to explaining in more detail where we are in the process, how we plan to proceed, and provide more timely updates, but there simply is not enough time. Our silence does not mean we are not doing anything. Quite to the contrary, we are working overtime, and have been for quite some time, to make the best of this situation. I have to cut this update short because the assembly house is awaiting final testing to begin production, but felt it could not wait any longer. A more detailed update will be sent as soon as possible describing the process and how to proceed from here.
7  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: September 18, 2013, 08:03:40 PM
Update:

Chip refunds:
We have processed the majority of the refund requests which were verified in the first two batches which did not require additional manual verification. We have also just received refunds for two additional batches, which includes our chip purchase, which will be used to process assembly refund requests. Refund requests will continue to be processed until they are complete.

There currently remains 2 batches of chips, and we are roughly one thousand chips in to the next batch of refund requests.

Chip shipment:
Yifu has stated he shipped the first batch on Monday. We are currently awaiting a tracking number. He has also stated the second batch should ship today or tomorrow.

Assembly update:
We are continuing to debug and troubleshoot the Klondike design. We have not been successful in hashing on more than one bank at a time, and have discovered further hardware flaws in addition to the lack of firmware which may inhibit the board from performing properly when the firmware required to use all 16 chips is finalized. We have ordered replacement parts for testing, which should be here this week. We are also working on the capability to update the firmware via USB to avoid the need for a PIC programmer. Terrahash has not responded to our inquiries regarding their claims to have a fully functioning unit. We have emailed Bkkcoins several times, to no avail.
If any of you are familiar with the Klondike design and would like to help, please let us know. We are most interested in firmware developers to assist in debugging the code, but all assistance is welcome. 

In the event the chips arrive prior to the design being finalized, we have two options. We can either assemble the units based on the design at the time of delivery, or we can delay assembly to finish the design and ensure it functions prior to shipping. We are still working on the procedure to handle this scenario, but suggest waiting until the units are fully functional. We cannot rule out the possibility of a hardware level flaw which would require a component replacement to function properly until we are successful hashing with all 16 chips.

Assembly refunds:
We have received our chip refund, and will begin processing assembly refunds shortly. We are working out the best way to process the requests, and will post an update upon completion.

Next gen:
We have been working towards solidifying the redesign using next gen chips, and are cautiously optimistic. We cannot release any details at this time.

There are several questions we have not answered, and we will get to them as quickly as possible with a more detailed update.
8  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: September 11, 2013, 10:11:14 AM
Please look for an email from the asicbuy[at]gmail[dot]com email address. The subject is incorrectly labeled "test". Below is a transcript of the message:

Update

I would like to begin by apologizing for the lack of timely communication the last couple of weeks. Our goal is to bring professionalism and honesty to the bitcoin marketplace, and no matter the reason, I have failed to provide adequate and timely customer service. For that I apologize.

Chip refunds:
We have requested and received refunds for Batches 5 and 6. We have also processed and verified those orders which were submitted correctly on the form. The chip refund process has been delayed due to a large number of requests which have failed verification, duplicate requests, and phishing attempts. The bitcointalk forum thread will be updated with instructions for successfully submitting a signed message. We will be sending out refunds over the next few days, and will continue to process any future chip refunds requests.

Our efforts to negotiate a discounted rate for the 110nm chips with Mr. Yifu Guo of Bitsyncom to compensate for delivery delays have failed. He has suggested processing a refund for all orders and offered a discounted rate for the 55nm chips which he has tentatively suggested will be available for purchase in mid to late November. It is unclear what changes will be required to integrate the new chip into the design, or when the datasheet and sample chips required for rework will be made available. We do not have a definitive timeline for chip availability, lead time for delivery after payment, customer priority status, performance data, pricing structure and competitive analysis, or contract outlining the purchase details and discount.  We have requested this information and are awaiting Yifu’s reply.

Assembly update:
The assembly house has programmed the pick and place equipment, fabricated the necessary project specific materials, and produced the first articles of the Fusion 16 based on the Klondike design. The units have successfully passed quality control, and the design is ready for full production.

We do not however have a fully functioning K16 at this time.

We have organized the collaborative efforts of ourselves, two Klondike based assembly companies, and several individuals within the community with software and hardware debugging experience to troubleshoot the design. As a result, we have determined the source of and corrected the hardware flaw resulting in proof of work not being read correctly, and the units are now hashing on a single bank of 8 chips at a time. We are actively troubleshooting the firmware issue which causes errors when both banks of chips are used at the same time. We will continue to debug the design until it is fully functional, and will be sending units to several people working on the project, in addition to those we have already shipped, for further troubleshooting. Currently updating the firmware does require a PIC programmer and does not support updating via USB.

Assembly Refunds:
The majority of the funds received for assembly have been disbursed in the process of fulfilling our duties and responsibilities to ensure we were prepared to assemble the units by the original delivery date of the Avalon chips.

Due to the open source nature of the design, delays in its completion, and the addition of PCB level components required to function properly, a significant portion of the materials necessary for manufacture were purchased at or above retail and in quantities far greater than required to mitigate any chance of assembly delays due to lack of materials. A considerable portion of these costs were subsidized by ourselves, which have not been recouped. 

In addition to the licensing fees paid for use of the Klondike design used in our assembly service, we have been an active participant in its development from the projects inception; committing considerable time, materials, and funding to the project. We have continued to support development of the design after the initial hardware phase by organizing the collaborative efforts of three separate Klondike-based assembly companies together with software and hardware engineers from the bitcoin community in order to test, debug, verify, and optimize the design.

We were able to source and cost effectively purchase several of the accessory components used in our design. These successes were mitigated by the increased costs due to the time constraints of the original chip delivery date. We were unwilling to allow assembly and shipping delays due to a lack of materials, and instead chose to purchase and ship all components with rush processing and expedited shipping. The greatest of these increased costs was the shipping fees for the roughly one ton of heatsinks required, which was rush processed and shipped via two day air freight express to guarantee there were no delays.

The manufacturer providing PCB assembly was chosen based on their skill, professionalism, and ability to work together with us to provide the highest quality product possible in the shortest amount of time, at the expense of greatly increased production costs.  The decision was made to reduce the possibility of poor production performance rather than increase our profit margin, which has already proven invaluable. The majority of the costs associated with assembly occur before the main run is ever produced, which we have already submitted. The assembly house has analyzed the design, received, inventoried, and prepared the parts for production, fabricated all necessary project specific materials, programmed the equipment, produced the first articles, and continues to refine and troubleshoot the process to reduce the chance of delays and increase the quality of the product. All of these costs are non-refundable. The assembly house has performed its duties superbly, including spending additional resources to assist us which were not included, and cannot be expected or required to provide a refund for work which they have already completed.

The operating expenses incurred in order to provide this service are not insignificant. There are appreciable physical and material costs required to function as a business. The labor costs of sourcing each component, organizing delivery timelines, establishing production processes, developing the website and payment system, organizing and maintaining the administrative tools and processes, providing customer service (albeit admittedly slow and unresponsive at times), and receiving, inventorying, and assembling parts have largely been subsidized by several members of the team working for significantly reduced rates. Forum member Steamboat, Steve, has not received any compensation for his efforts in providing the assembly service.
We have not let any time go to waste throughout this process. Once it was clear the original delivery date for the chips would not be met, and we realized there was a strong possibility of multiple batches showing up at our door unannounced, we began prepping all of the included accessory components and refining our receiving, assembly, packaging, and shipping processes. We also chose to increase the value of the original product with components we had not had the time to source and receive, funded by reducing our profit margin and the assembly cost savings gained from greater assembly volume. Throughout this period we continued to pursue information regarding the status of the chips which until recently has been met with silence.

As a result, there currently remains roughly 20% of the total funds accepted to date which have not already been disbursed in the process of fulfilling our duties to produce the units our customers have purchased, which is earmarked to cover a portion of the remaining costs of producing and shipping the units, the remainder of which will be subsidized by us. The assembly costs for those customers who wish to accept the finished units once the ASIC chips arrive will increase as a result of the reduced quantity produced due to assembly refunds, which we will also subsidize.

Due to the production costs we have incurred to date, and future costs necessary to fulfill our obligations as outlined above, we can only offer a 25% refund of assembly costs, and 100% refund of hosting and shipping fees at this time. We will be refunding our batch purchase of ASICs in order to finance the balance of the production costs and refund requests.

Moving forward:
In light of our failure to negotiate the discounted delivery of the 110nm Avalon chip orders, and the current status of the Klondike firmware, we cannot in good conscience ask or expect our customers to continue with assembly once the chips do arrive. We will process any orders for those that wish to continue with assembly, and our policy of not forcing anyone to accept a refund still stands. We will also continue support the completion of the Klondike design and firmware.

The most cost effective and efficient way to recover the nonrefundable losses sustained is to reuse as much of the materials purchased as possible in a board redesign using a more efficient chip. We are currently evaluating the possibility of a board level redesign using the same form factor which will allow us to reuse the majority of the current design’s accessory components, and likely portions of the board level components. While we have been contacted regarding this possibility by a promising engineering team, research on the viability of a redesign is still in its infancy, and there are no guarantees it of our success. That being said, it is in our best interest to produce a competitive product which reuses the existing stock as quickly as possible, and we will be devoting all available resources to do so. 

In the event we are successful in redesigning the board, and can negotiate a fair and competitive price for the chips to be used with a verifiable delivery date, all customers who purchased assembly will be credited the full value of the components reused in producing the new units, in addition to a heavily discounted rate for the balance. We do not currently have any information regarding the final cost of the redesigned unit, which manufacturer’s chip the design will be based on, performance data, or availability at this time.

In the event we are unable to produce a redesigned unit, those customers which purchased assembly will have the option of receiving the components purchased for production of the original units if they so choose.

To say the current situation is not optimal is an understatement, and all parties involved have incurred significant losses. As stated previously, we do not plan on giving up, and will continue to weather this storm and do everything in our power to rectify the situation.

I will do my absolute best to provide timely updates moving forward, even if just to assure you that we’re still here.
9  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: September 04, 2013, 12:34:41 AM
Update:

We have sent the first of a two part update to all members of the group buy. Please note this email has accidentally been sent from steamboats personal email address. A copy of this update is posted below.

The following is an update on the order status of Avalon ASIC chips regarding an order you have placed.

Chip order status:

We have been in contact with Yifu over the past three days and are currently negotiating a compensation plan for damages incurred as a result of Bitsyncom’s failure to deliver. We cannot give any additional information at this time. While we are working to reach a fair and agreeable resolution for all parties involved, it is still unclear whether further action will be required, and we make no promises regarding the outcome. Yifu has informed us he will be releasing an update later today, but has not disclosed the topic.
   
We have confirmed with Yifu directly the eligibility of all batches ordered for a refund, to be processed when requested. Additionally, there is no deadline for requesting a refund. As such, we have begun processing all requests for refunds of orders placed with us, which will be submitted to Yifu upon each batch being requested in full.

The following procedure will be used to facilitate the refund requests:

Refunds will be in the amount of 95% of the original .086 BTC purchase price, or .0817 BTC per chip.

All those requesting a chip refund will be allowed to do so, so long as there are enough requests to fulfill an entire batch.

No customer will be forced to accept a refund in order to process a batch refund.

Each customer may choose to submit a refund request for a single order or all orders they have placed, but must refund each order in its entirety. Partial refunds for any order will not be accepted.
 
Refunds of batches will be requested from Mr. Yifu Guo of Bitsyncom beginning with Batch 6, and continue in reverse order to the first so long as refund requests equal an entire batch.

Customers in a batch which has been refunded will be placed in an earlier batch according to their position in that batch’s order, and their position relative to other batches. All purchases will be kept in their original order, and the order book truncated to reflect the refunded purchases.

Once a refund request has been placed with us, and the refund request submitted to Mr. Yifu Guo of Bitsyncom, it is final. There will be no option to receive the chips originally ordered for any reason once the process has begun.

Chip purchase refunds will be dispersed upon receipt of the refund from Mr. Yifu Guo of Bitsyncom. We will supply any administrative paperwork necessary and do what we can to facilitate the refund. We accept no responsibility for any delays outside of our control, which include delayed receipt of the refund from Mr. Yifu Guo of Bitsyncom, and will not disperse refunds prior to receipt of the funds from Mr. Yifu Guo of Bitsyncom.

To process your refund, please fill out the refund request form found at the bottom of this email in its entirety. Each refund request will be verified for its authenticity and processed. Any submissions failing verification will be sent an email for additional verification. Once we have reached 10,000 chips, the request will be submitted to Mr. Yifu Guo of Bitsyncom and processed.

The situation as it stands is far from optimal, and while we realize a 100% refund is desired by most of those who have purchased chips through us, we have invested considerable resources in order to  facilitate our offer of Avalon ASIC chips to the community, and cannot offer a full refund. We have done everything in our power to educate potential customers of the risks involved when considering placing an order, and have stated explicitly we assume no responsibility for any issues that may arise due to circumstances outside our control; including but not limited to Avalon failing to ship, shipment being seized by customs, shipment arriving late, etc.

While we are not bound in any way to do so, we know it is unethical to retain the profits made from chip purchases, and have chosen to refund all profits which remain after administrative, logistical, and material expenses have been taken into consideration.


10  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: August 29, 2013, 06:50:14 AM
Update:

Chip Purchase:
We have given Yifu and Bitsyncom significantly more leeway than warranted as we understand unforeseen circumstances can delay processing, and chose to use the tools they have provided to attempt to determine the status of our orders. As this proved fruitless, we began seeking other methods of contacting Yifu, which have also been in vain. Our tickets, messages, and phone calls have been met with silence, while our delivery date has come and gone.

We have over the last couple of weeks been seeking professional guidance regarding the most effective way to recoup losses from actual and reliance damages caused by Yifu and Bitsyncom. While speaking with Yifu personally in order to come to an agreement that is acceptable to both parties is ideal, he has refused to communicate with us and legal action may be our only recourse. This is most definitely not the preferred method to address the situation, and in no way guarantees compensation for damages, but we may be left with no other choice. We will continue to develop our strategy, and welcome any group buy organizers who wish to collaborate on this. Again, this is a worst case scenario and we do not want to take this path if it is in any way avoidable, but we cannot in good conscience say we have done our due diligence without preparing for this possibility.

We will continue to try to contact Yifu, and if anyone has information regarding a reliable method to reach him, please send us an email.

Chip Refunds:
The Avalon website clearly states in their “no BS” terms of sale there are no refunds for Batch purchases. Yifu has since stated he will be making a refund form for chip purchases (https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=269950.msg3030839#msg3030839).  Whether he will, when the refund option will be available, and when the refund will be processed is unknown. In the event Yifu and Bitsyncom do allow refunds, we will facilitate this process for all those willing to do so. We have tentatively drafted the following, which will be finalized and updated upon confirmation of this option from Yifu and Bitsyncom.

All those requesting a chip refund will be allowed to do so, so long as there are enough requests to fulfill an entire batch. We will not force anyone to accept a refund.

Refunds of batches will be requested from Yifu and Bitsyncom beginning with the last batch, and continue to the first so long as refund requests fill an entire batch.

Customers in a batch which has been refunded will be placed in an earlier batch according to their position in that batch’s order, and their position relative to other batches. All purchases will be kept in their original order, and the order book truncated to reflect the refunded purchases.

Once a refund request has been placed with us, and the refund request submitted to Yifu and Bitsyncom, it is final. There will be no option to receive the chips originally ordered for any reason once the process has begun.

Chip purchase refunds will be dispersed upon receipt of the refund from Yifu and Bitsyncom. We will supply any administrative paperwork necessary and do what we can to facilitate the refund, but we are not responsible for any delays outside of our control, which include delayed receipt of the refund from Yifu and Bitsyncom, and will not disperse refunds prior to receipt of the funds from Yifu and Bitsyncom.

We will post an update and send an email to everyone who has purchased chips with additional information and instructions once we have received confirmation of the refund option.

Assembly Refunds:
We currently are not accepting refunds for the assembly service. There are a number of items involved in producing the Fusion 16 aside from the physical materials necessary whose cost cannot be recouped. The PCB, BOM, shipping materials, and all included accessory components make up only a portion of the overall costs, the majority of which cannot be returned or refunded. It may be possible to resell a large portion of the BOM and some of the accessories, but this process will take time and will not result in 100% ROI. We are examining how best to approach this in order to prepare for the worst, and will post an update at that time.

An update on our situation:


In addition to the batch of chips we have purchased ourselves, we have also allocated more than 40% of the profits from each batch to the purchase of additional chips to ensure there is a cushion available to our customers in the event of a faulty chip or odd number order; 100 of which are allocated as “equilibrium chips” at no additional cost.

Throughout this process we have pre-purchased the product before offering it to the public. We believe in our abilities, and have acted accordingly. We purchased the components necessary to produce 3,000 Fusion 16’s, in some cases at very inflated prices with expedited shipping charges, in order to make sure we were ready to fulfill our responsibilities. Of the 3,000 assembly kits we have on hand, we have sold roughly 2,400. We have also continued to add to the Fusion 16 items which we had not originally had time to offer, without any increase in price. We chose an assembly house in the US even though it was 10 times more expensive than assembling the units overseas because we value verifiable quality and expedited shipping times more than our profit margin, which is why we can offer the shortest lead time of any Avalon based product.

I am not alone on this project, and could not hope to accomplish our goals without an amazing team. Most of the team members involved have been working on this project for little to no compensation, and several full time, because we believe in our capabilities and are dedicated to providing quality service which is so desperately needed in this community. We knew the risks when we started, and we are not giving up. We will continue to work to provide the best possible resolution. 

Board assembly:
We have produced the first articles of the Fusion16. The board has passed electrical testing and the firmware has been loaded. We are working closely with other Klondike based vendors and cgminer devs to troubleshoot the units, and expect to be fully functional by the weekend. The assembly house is fully prepped and waiting, pending final verification of the design, and we should not experience any delays due to the boards arriving unannounced.


We have discovered a bottleneck in production created by our firmware programming process, and are working to correct it immediately to ensure there are no delays.

Batches 1 and 2 are fully prepped and loaded in the final assembly line.

We are using this time to refine our processes and thoroughly test each phase to ensure the fastest possible turnaround.


I would like to personally thank those of you who have remained polite and courteous in spite of the current situation. We understand how disheartening this is, and appreciate you for thoroughly thinking this through with us to determine the best approach to take.
11  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: August 16, 2013, 12:13:40 AM
Update:

The situation regarding communication with Avalon has not changed. We have opened tickets and called Yifu, and have not received a reply. We are continuing to try to reach them, but we do not have any new information as to the status of the batch shipments.

We have received the remaining samples for Batches 5 and 6, and received an update and tracking numbers through the Avalon website one day after the chips arrived. This is disconcerting as it is the second time we have received a package from Avalon without warning, and could cause a one to two day delay in our timeline if they show up unannounced, as we will not have time to prepare our assembly house.

The assembly house has all necessary components at their facilities, inventoried and ready to begin production once the chips arrive.

We are continuing to work to pre assemble and prepare everything we can for each batch prior to arrival of the chips. We have completed everything necessary for Batch 1, and are nearly complete with Batch 2. Both of these Batches will be completely ready for final assembly and shipping prior to the chips arrival should they both arrive at the same time. We are concerned we will receive several batches at once, and are working diligently to do as much prep work as possible while we wait. Pre assembling the units greatly increases the amount of storage space required as each finished unit consumes more space than the raw goods, though this should not be an issue until after batch three. We do have additional staff on hand to expedite the remaining pre assembly should more than 2 batches be delivered at once.

We do not know when or how the chips will arrive, and while we had originally anticipated having roughly a week between orders for prep time, we should be able to hold to our original timeline of three days for each batch should they all arrive at once. All hosted units should be fully integrated two to three days after batch completion.
 
We are continuing to explore our options regarding the delivery delays, and are evaluating possible solutions. We will not be discussing these options publicly until we have a clear understanding of the situation and how to resolve it. We apologize for the feeling of uncertainty this causes, and ask that you continue to remain patient with us. We will post an update regarding any information we can release once available. 

We have a responsibility to all of our customers which we do not take lightly, and cannot take a course of action that would be detrimental to any of them. The Avalon website clearly states refunds for batches are not possible. Even if an entire batch of customers chose to petition for a refund, it is unclear what reaction Avalon would have to the petition, and how it would affect the other 6 batches. This is just one of multiple scenarios we must take into consideration when deciding how best to proceed.

The situation is far from optimal, we are aware, and our customers are not the only ones affected. We have a substantial purchase of chips ourselves, in addition to the significant investment we have made in materials and labor for assembly and hosting. We are not asking for your sympathy, but we do want you to know we are acutely aware of what you are going through.  We knew the risks involved when ordering, and we have made every effort from the very beginning to ensure our customers understood these risks as well.

Our stated objective has been to deliver affordable, efficient, reliable miners, and we have strived to be up front during each phase of the process. We invested significant amounts of our own time and capital in order to provide our customers with the best batch order dates and made sure the components necessary to build our units were ready on time or early; purchasing several long lead time items before the design was even finalized. We are not here to make a quick buck, we are here to demonstrate our sincerity and ability to the community. The current situation has damaged our reputation, regardless of the cause, and we are doing everything in our power to rectify it.

We have not at any point taken a “wait and see” approach, and we do not plan on starting now.   

In regards to communication with Liquid Synergy Designs. We apologize if you have not received a reply. We will redouble our efforts to ensure you receive a response in a timely manner. If you have sent us an email regarding questions clearly defined in the FAQ or first page of this thread, please revisit those sections, and we answer your inquiry when time permits.

As a side note: Emotions are running high right now, and understandably so. Disagreements are to be expected. I ask that you please do not give in to the temptation to lash out at other members of the community, regardless of the reason. Do not let productive discourse degenerate to personal attacks. Infighting will not yield a positive result. We as a community are in the spotlight, whether we like it or not. It is our responsibility to demonstrate professionalism and self-control when speaking to each other, as we are representatives of bitcoin and the world is watching.
12  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: August 10, 2013, 05:10:26 PM
Yifu has posted a response regarding the chip delivery delays, which can be found here: http://avalon-asics.com

Unfortunately, the post does not provide any specifics on shipping dates moving forward, and offers very little information about the delays experienced to this point. Our inquiries by other means specifically regarding our orders have remain unanswered, and we have not received any information as to the status of our batches from either Yifu or any member of his team.

For these reasons, we have chosen to close Batch 7. Those who have placed an order for Batch 7 have been sent an email with further information.

We remain optimistic the chips which have already been ordered will be delivered, though we do not have any information as to when our orders will be fulfilled. We are exploring our options, and will continue to monitor the situation closely. We will post an update the moment we have definitive information.

13  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: August 06, 2013, 11:55:15 PM
The Fusion single is just a hair under 4". 4 Fusions stacked on top of each other measure 8.5" from the bottom to the top of the standoffs.
14  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: August 06, 2013, 08:13:06 PM
Steamboat, given we're all going to need to extract the most we can from these boards and these is no high current power supply version coming, would you consider an assembly option to only load 12 ASICs on each board instead of 16?  My current plan is to remove 4 ASICs from each board (I've only ordered 4 boards) but this seems wasteful.

If a lot of people were interested in a 12 ASIC version that was overclockable at the same assembly price, would you offer it?

We do not believe it is wise to use less than 16 chips. Placing 12 chips on the board increases the cost per chip by 25%, or $33.42. The boards should produce 325-350/mhs fully populated. The gains from overclocking the chip would likely not outweigh the loss of overall hashrate or increased hardware and operating costs.


I am here, and we are doing everything we can to expedite the shipments. It is very frustrating to have to wait, but that is exactly what we must do. We do not control shipping, Avalon does. We can ask for information, but it is up to them to reply. Avalon is most definitely aware of the growing concern within the community about shipping dates. We cannot speak for Avalon, or speculate on the reason for their delays.

We are prepared for Batch 1, and are using this time to refine our processes and ensure everything that can be done prior to chip arrival is completed. We are over halfway through preparing parts for all of the Batches, and will be ready to process all 3,000 units should the chips arrive at once. We are currently operating with a skeleton staff on this project, though we have already trained and prepared our entire staff in order to quickly deploy all orders once the chips land.

We are working to source components in order to offer additional units, but the lead time for several parts is prohibitively long. Some of these parts have been ordered factory direct, but will not arrive until the first week of September. If anyone has additional components they will not be using, preferably in tape and reel, please email us.

We are in the same position you are. As we stated earlier, we've approached this as if we were producing our own units, because we are. Avalon delaying shipping hurts us just as it hurts you. We are not happy with the situation, and if flying to China to pick up the units in person would facilitate the arrival of our chips we'd be on the next flight. We will continue to do what we can, and will give an update the moment we know more information.

On a more positive note, we have retired our trusty cardboard Klondike in favor of something a little more pleasant to look at.
 


We've also tested the stacking design for those of you who have purchased more than one unit



We are here, we have not abandoned you. Please be patient and know we are doing everything in our power to deliver as quickly as possible.
15  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: July 27, 2013, 08:39:12 PM
Mini update:

We have a new addition to the DIY kit. Anyone who purchases more than one unit will also receive this.

16  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: July 25, 2013, 08:34:06 PM
We are in the middle of the work day, but I felt it necessary to give a quick explanation in order to assuage some of your concerns. A more in depth post will be made later tonight.

If you have purchased assembly, your parts are accounted for, and will be available once your chips come in. They have not, and will not, be sold to anyone else. This is why there is a limit on our currently available stock.

For example, If a customer purchases assembly services for chips which were purchased in Batch 5, then all the components required to fill that order will be held in reserve until that customers chips arrive, at which point they will be used to fulfill their order. They will not be used to fulfill another customers order whose chips arrived before theirs.

Those who have purchased chips directly from us have had just under one month to purchase assembly, and over two weeks to purchase prior to our service being made available to the public. We have given ample time to purchase the desired service, and worked with individuals to ensure they were able to complete their purchase.

We are not responsible for delays caused from waiting until we are sold out of available stock to place an order for assembly.
17  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: July 25, 2013, 06:22:37 AM
We have ordered enough parts for 3,000 units. Once these are gone, there will likely be considerable delays for the next batch to arrive. We are receiving orders from chip purchasers other than our own 6 batches, and will not be holding any components in reserve for those that have purchased chips from us. [/b][/size]

There are 625 complete K16 to a batch of 10k chips...so we are good up through batch four correct? This assumes no one wants their chips only or are sending them elsewhere of course.

That would be the case if we were not accepting orders from other sources. We are not reserving any parts for those that have purchased chips from us.
18  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: July 25, 2013, 05:31:42 AM
Steamboat-

Thanks for all the updates... the hardware looks awesome!

I'm contemplating an upgrade from DIY kit form to fully-assembled and tested boards.  What sort of difference in shipping time do you expect between these options? i.e., how many days to assemble/test each batch of boards, and will you ship out the DIY kit form ones first?

The only difference in shipping time comes from the testing phase, which requires roughly a day to test. Each order will be processed in the order it was purchased, and the entire batch should be out the door in 3 days, minus any testing stragglers.

Hi Steamboat, could you tell us how BkkCoins will be compensated? If that's under NDA, then I'd like to hear from both you and steamboat that you are happy with the deal.

I can't find the post right now, but I believe it was stated that Steamboat will be paying a license fee to BKKCoins for each board sold (actually I think it's a firmware license). Sorry, I don't recall if it was posted in this thread, or the Klondike 16 thread.

With that said, I personally plan to mine to BkkCoin's address for some period after getting my units. Just as a thank you. I know others have said they will do the same.

That is correct. We have been working closely with Bkk and funding development of the Klondike from the beginning, both monetarily and with samples. We will be paying a license fee to Bkk for each unit produced, including our own.

Thx I tried to PM to, but SB seems busy.
I chosed "none" on the assemble option. I'm on batch 5 and already ordered and paid by burnin.

Hope I can change the assembly option.
Plz PM me, when u know more, I will do the same for you...


Greets mastah

hey, ive got 140 in batch 5, to be sent to burnin aswell.. if we tell steamboat, we share the shipping..
i do think burnin will tell steamboat aswell, as he sees all orders and our batches.
lets see what happends.

Yes. The chips belong to you, and you may do as you please with them. Do not expect a significant price break on shipping as there are very few who have chosen this option.


Update:

Component sourcing:
The majority of the parts have arrived, we're waiting on a few stragglers that should be here by the end of the week.

Final assembly sourcing:
All parts have been delivered and are being processed to facilitate assembly once the units arrive.

Logistics:
The Fusion16 rack is now completely full, and overflowing into other sections of the warehouse. The shipping, assembly, and testing stations are complete and currently undergoing dry run testing to ensure there are no bottlenecks.

A couple photos:

The Cardboard Klondike in all it's glory.


We are pleased to present the finalized Kit:


The savings from shipping fees alone make this an incredible deal.


We have ordered enough parts for 3,000 units. Once these are gone, there will likely be considerable delays for the next batch to arrive. We are receiving orders from chip purchasers other than our own 6 batches, and will not be holding any components in reserve for those that have purchased chips from us.
19  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: July 21, 2013, 05:10:34 AM
Can you clarify what we should purchase to power full kit units in addition to a quality power supply. The first post does not mention that any PCIe power cables are included in the full kit.
Just want to make sure I don't overlap power supply items on my end with what is coming in the full kit. Can you update us on which PCIe extension cable you are referring to above that are included in the assembled units?
Currently the Fusion 16 comes with an 18" PCIe extension cable to make it easier to connect to a normal desktop computer. This will also make it easier to power the units in a stacked configuration. We are currently sourcing a PCIe splitter solution, and will add that to the list of items in the DIY kit if we receive it in time.

Thanks Steamboat for your update.

When will the deadline be for payment on the other batches from 2 through 7 for the fully assembled boards? In particular batch 4.

It is suggested to place your order as quickly as possible.

Steamboat, fun direction question...
does fun blow the air to the heatsink or does suck air from heatsink?

We use a proprietary design which retains over 99.87% of the fun produced, while consuming almost no electricity.

Also, the fan blows directly on the heatsink   Wink

+1 to this. My post asking this was regarding the 0.3.0 with correction for the noise problems. I realize you aren't waiting for another board that will (possibly) over clock better. I think we just all want to make sure you're going with the newest version that has the ferrite beads etc.

As a related question, assuming you're going with the 0.3.0 boards, whats the status of ordering the additional parts that have been added to the BOM?

Thanks again for all the effort.

Version 0.3.2 of the PCB and BOM has been ordered. All BOM components are scheduled to be delivered at the assembly house by the end of next week.

Now for the million dollar question: Any updates from Avalon on your end Steamboat? Tracking number/shipment notifications for any of the batches?
Not as of yet. The moment we receive word from Avalon we will pass it on.
So delivery time has passed on batch #1 and you're going to wait until something happens? Please inquire why said delivery time isn't followed up on.
We are, and have been, actively monitoring every aspect of this project. When we receive word from Avalon regarding our status update request, we will pass it on.

I know I am a bit late on this, but +1 on the case as well.  Curious what the pricing would be, but given the PSU(s), cases, cabling, and time/effort involved, this seems like it would be a big win for those of us who bought more than a handful of boards.

Is there any update on if this is going to be offered (or what price it might be offered at)?  Didn't see anything on http://liquidsyndesigns.com or further mention in the thread...

Case work is in progress. I received the first machined parts yesterday and am assembling prototypes. The PDU PCB design is underway, and I should have something to show next week. The Mineninja folks are on-board with development.

Some pictures from today:

Everyone, meet Jimrome. He is the creative talent behind the CAD drawings you may have seen on the front page of this thread and the website, as well as the project lead for our case.




Update:

Component sourcing:
The PCB based on Rev 0.3.2 has been ordered. We are doing everything in our power short of sitting on a stool in the fabrication shop to expedite the process. We have decided to process the main batch immediately, with samples being sent from the batch for testing. In the event the test fails, we will pay any additional fees incurred as a result. We understand time is of the essence, and feel confident enough in the design and our fabrication company to take this calculated risk to push production through.
The updated BOM has been ordered, and should finish being delivered by the end of next week. The assembly house has already begun sorting and preparing our order.

Final assembly sourcing:
We have received the spring loaded screws, standard screws, and standoffs.
The fans and USB cables are both scheduled to arrive on Tuesday.
The IC2, or "Klego" connectors, will arrive on Tuesday as well.

Logistics:
The buildout and renovation of the offices and warehouse area to transform them into assembly, staging, and shipping areas is essentially finished. We are now working to sort the roughly 1.5 tons of parts and begin preloading the assembly areas.

A few photos of the assembly pieces:

The heatsink with the new spring loaded screws:




Pieces of the Kit. It is still missing the USB cable, IC2 cable, fan, and hopefully PCIe splitter cables.




Our patented cardboard Klondike Smiley This is the test setup we are using for packaging verification.



When we say all you will need is a host and a power supply, we mean it.
20  Bitcoin / Hardware / Re: Liquid Synergy Designs Inc. -ASIC mining hardware on: July 17, 2013, 04:00:04 PM
Now for the million dollar question: Any updates from Avalon on your end Steamboat? Tracking number/shipment notifications for any of the batches?

Not as of yet. The moment we receive word from Avalon we will pass it on.
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